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Comment Re:Been there. Not fun. (Score 2) 813

Ford recognised that if he paid his workers enough to buy his cars, they'd both be better off.

The companies offshoring their labour aren't selling into the Indian market (at least not primarily). They are selling into the much more lucrative US market. That market is lucrative, in part, because of the strong middle-class which, in turn, is supported by higher wages (to grossly over simplify).

The offshoring company is essentially exploiting _other_ companies who hire locally and hence have to pay a higher wage. They are the ones who are sustaining the market that the offshoring company wants to sell to, but isn't, themselves, prepared to sustain.

It takes a remarkably short-sighted view point as well as a nearly rabid 'profit above all else' attitude to see large scale offshoring as anything other than detrimental.

Comment Re:Oh No! Trump opened his mouth again! (Score 3, Insightful) 756

Categorisation is really useful when you want to deal with aggregates rather than individual instances, but the catch is that you need to remember that you are making some assumptions.

You are correct in saying that there are two genders - for certain values of what 'gender' means. Gender is more than just a categorisation of biological sex - it also refers to social structures and identities (and yes, I'm aware that those social structures and identities grow out of and are closely linked with the biological). Even when considering the purely biological meaning, while most individuals in a population may be well defined as either male or female, not all will be.

You plead 'reality', but reality is not as binary as our approximations sometimes imply. Ignoring edge cases and exceptions because they form a small percentage of the group in question might be convenient, but when those exceptions are individuals who have to deal with social stigmas, discrimination or simply the unconscious assumptions that your post typifies perhaps convenience can bow to courtesy without it being labelled 'political correctness'.

This is not a new phenomenon. Historically, several cultures have had more than two genders with well defined social roles and positions.

You are reminding someone that there exists an approximation (that's useful and fits large samples of data quite well, but is still an approximation) and dismiss trying to discuss and deal with the exceptions, edge cases or less well-defined individuals as 'political correctness'. Yes, you are technically correct, but your post adds nothing. If you have a criticism about the position being taken by the GP, then make it.

Submission + - Woman Who Took Husband's Intestine on Flight to Europe Wanted It Tested writes: The NYT reports that a Moroccan woman who took a piece of her dead husband’s intestine on a flight to their home in Austria was carrying the sample because she suspected that he had been poisoned and she wanted European doctors to examine it. The woman packed the four-inch piece in her checked baggage on a flight to the southern Austrian city of Graz, where she and her husband had been living for eight years. She acted on the advice of a doctor in Marrakesh who shared her suspicion that her husband had been poisoned at a meal the couple ate while visiting his relatives. The woman was travelling through Graz airport in the south of Austria but was reportedly stopped by officials after they observed her behaving suspiciously. Officers determined that the woman had violated no Austrian laws by bringing the sample into the country. A Moroccan doctor extracted the piece of intestine and apparently helped pack it in formaldehyde and in thick plastic containers. Gerald Höfler, who leads the pathology institute in Graz where the intestine is being examined, described the packaging as very professional. “I would imagine that it was done by a pathologist,” Höfler said. “It was absolutely secure, triple wrapped, according to European Union norms.”

Comment Re:Thelema (Score 5, Insightful) 539

Some of the best people I've known in life have been believers

Likewise - and from a similar range of backgrounds. However, to the extent that their beliefs contain things I find abhorrent, I see their 'native' generosity as being constrained by religion, not the result of it. Certainly many of those I know who started as believers and came to reject the beliefs they were raised on did so from the dissonance between principles and expression, internal inconsistencies or an internal growth that left the original belief system behind.

More, some of the most dangerous and damaging people I have met have been fervent believers. Some have used their belief system to justify behaviour that is essentially self-serving. Others, from genuine belief that what they were doing was 'right', have caused more harm than the first group.

If you should encounter a really horrible person online, say on a forum or Twitter or something, chances are very good that they're atheists

There are certainly a lot of nasty, self-important people who are atheists. Just as there are plenty who are Christian, Muslim, Jew, Hindu ... I suspect a degree of confirmation bias in your assertion.

but because being horrible almost requires non-belief

As T.S. Eliot observed “Most of the evil in this world is done by people with good intentions.” Belief can be, and often is, used to justify action that would otherwise be clearly horrible.

they tend to stick out because they tend to make a spectacle of themselves

As do your online atheists, above. How can you tell an atheist who doesn't loudly announce it at every opportunity?

but belief seems to have the properties of a good ingredient.

Unquestioning belief can be blind. Unchallenged belief is limiting. Unexamined belief can be stagnating. In as much as it's easier to co-operate with people with whom you share a common belief, belief builds communities - but it's a short-cut to really understanding and acceptance of an individual. As you say, all too often it becomes tribalism by another name. Just because some people can be amazing and also believe says little about the worth of belief.

It's almost as if the part that makes you better is the process, more than the specifics of any faith tradition.

With this I am in total agreement.

Comment Re:I feel an irregular verb coming on (Score 2) 232

or doesn't commending 9/11 with a call to complete it by hitting the White House and Capitol Hill strike you as unacceptable?

I disagree with both the commendation and the call to further violence, but it is only when we disagree with what someone is saying that we are tested on our commitment to the principle of the free exchange of information and ideas. To be clear, I do not wish to see statements, such as above, censored or blocked (to paraphrase Hall wrt Voltaire).

Let them speak. If the idea has no merit, it will have as much impact as any other rant or rave of the fringe lunatics. If, on the other hand, there is some group of people who might be swayed by the ideas, then the problem doesn't lie with the message but with the circumstances that have created such a group or allowed them to arise. Treat the cause, not the symptoms.

Comment Re: Does it run macOS? (Score 2) 140

A large number (most?) of people who buy a computer are never going to repair or upgrade it. Of those machines that are opened up, a large number will be repaired or upgraded by a technician or support staff and even then, the vast majority are only going to have RAM increased. Gamers and people with a technical bent like to be able to access their machines, but for almost everyone else, they are appliances and accessibility just adds space and cost.

I'd also love to see something between the mini and the Pro in a tech-friendly format, but both of us belong to a very small market sector and one that Apple has no interest in.

Macs used to remain useful for longer than Windows PCs. Part of that was OSX, part of it was different users and use cases. AIOs made no sense in the PC world, where you'd need to be throwing the whole thing away every couple of years, rather than upgrading components. It was a better proposition on the Mac side of things. These days, however, a 5 year old mid-level PC is still useful. A Windows/PC AIO isn't as bad a choice as once it was. Microsoft can make decent hardware, but suffers from coming late to markets with products that are as good as _but_no_better_ than those already in the field. If it can avoid playing catch-up with Apple and the iMac a Microsoft AIO isn't necessarily a bad concept.

Lot's of 'ifs'.

Submission + - SPAM: The outlook for the British tourism industry is bleak

cithotelservice writes: THE one thing we know for certain about the longer-term consequences of last month's Brexit vote is that we don't know what all those consequences will be. For the travel industry, that is especially true. Even so, hope is currently in short supply.

Immediately after the referendum, airlines were lumped in with banks and property firms as the shares to sell. IAG, the parent company of British Airways, has lost a third of its value since the results were announced on 24th June. That is only to be expected. It seems certain that outbound travel from Britain will take a hit. As the pound falls and the rest of the world becomes more expensive, and low business confidence causes firms to rein in corporate travel, fewer Brits will go abroad. (And that is before we factor in the unknowns, such as whether British carriers will be able to maintain unfettered access to EU skies.)

The impact of Brexit on the number of people visiting the United Kingdom (if such a thing will still exist) is much less sure. But a gloomy note from Euromonitor, a research firm,...Continue reading

Link to Original Source

Submission + - Chilcot report: Iraq invasion 'not justified', UK government report finds (

aphelion_rock writes: The UK chose to invade Iraq in 2003 based on flawed intelligence that should have been challenged but wasn't, and which was presented in a way that glossed over reservations and ambiguities, according to the long-awaited "Chilcot report".
British prime minister Tony Blair allowed the US's military timetable to override his own, abandoning plans to pull together international consensus and to properly plan for the post-invasion period, because he decided it was "right and necessary" to defer to his close ally, the report finds.

Comment Re:Oxford English Dictionary is against you (Score 1) 71

The use of the term 'cop' or 'copper' to refer to the police has a number of possible roots. From the Latin 'capere' meaning to catch, perhaps. Maybe from the Dutch 'kapen'. From the French or even Anglo Saxon. There's evidence of the use of the modern form 'cop' meaning to catch in the 1700s and the use of 'copper' as 'one who catches' about the same time. Suggestions that the term has to do with copper buttons or helmets, or that a copper-a-day was the wage of a policeman are fanciful, as are backronyms like 'Constable on Patrol' and 'Civilian Officer of the Peace'.

The word 'civilian' has meant different things at different times. The link Bruce66423 so thoughtfully provides gives a number of these, and being the OED, provides a history of examples of usage. I'm not sure what you mean by 'revisionist history'? 'Civilian' has variously meant someone who practices civil law, someone who is moral without being christian, someone who is not in the military and someone who is not in a specified professional group. That last, the definition you are objecting to, has examples that are all informal. I consider it a stylistic fault for an article to use a police/civilian split, but it's not incorrect. I think that in an environment of increased militisation of police that it's tasteless, but it's still not incorrect.

I'm not sure what you are getting at with insisting that the police are under 'civil law'. Certainly in my country (Australia) police have certain rights that differ from non-police as well as certain restrictions and obligations. I think the militarisation of police is a concern; I think that movements away from Peel's 'policing by consent' towards increased use of force, decreased transparency etc. are concerning. To the degree that you seem to be saying something similar, I agree.

Comment Re:Suicide by politician (Score 3, Insightful) 1010

Snopes quotes sources and gives reasons for the conclusions that are drawn. While that may not be a terribly high bar, it's usually more than those who "bring[s] up any of the 'holes in the matrix'".

I love how people quote that bullshit site like it's the fucking Encyclopedia Britannica

It's a starting point. Usually conversations run something like "Outrageous Claim!", "Counterpoint - link to Snopes" ... followed by silence or claims that Snopes lacks rigor, lacks authority, is itself part of the conspiracy etc. If Snopes is such "garbage" it should be reasonably simple to refute but I rarely see challenges to the conclusions Snopes draws based on evidence or analysis. Just breathless accusations.

You seem to be claiming that people use Snopes as an appeal to authority, and then attack Snopes 'authority'. Which is kind of an ad hominem. I read the Zero Hedge link and then the Snopes link. One quotes similar sites, the other references court documents, interviews officials and attempts to show why and how misinformation was used to create the 'story'. Clear 'win' to Snopes. Burden of proof back to original claim.

it's a webpage run by some guy

Yup. It's credibility would ... double! if only more than one person was involved in writing the articles.

Now, would you mind telling me why I should believe the claims of Zero Hedge (that Ashe was killed as part of a Clinton coverup) when Snopes pretty clearly (to me) explains how the cause of death was misreported and how that was used to create the accusation the Zero Hedge promotes? If you could also address the discrepancy between the claims Zero Hedge makes (that Ashe was due to testify in a case against Clinton) and the court documents and clarification from the US District Attorney's office, with a similar (or better) standard of evidence, then I'll happily concede the point. Until then, your assertion that Snopes is garbage seems unfounded.

Submission + - US Efforts To Regulate Encryption Have Been Flawed, Government Report Finds (

An anonymous reader writes: U.S. Republican congressional staff said in a report released Wednesday that previous efforts to regulate privacy technology were flawed and that lawmakers need to learn more about technology before trying to regulate it. The 25-page white paper is entitled Going Dark, Going Forward: A Primer on the Encryption Debate and it does not provide any solution to the encryption fight. However, it is notable for its criticism of other lawmakers who have tried to legislate their way out of the encryption debate. It also sets a new starting point for Congress as it mulls whether to legislate on encryption during the Clinton or Trump administration. "Lawmakers need to develop a far deeper understanding of this complex issue before they attempt a legislative fix," the committee staff wrote in their report. The committee calls for more dialogue on the topic and for more interviews with experts, even though they claim to have already held more than 100 such briefings, some of which are classified. The report says in the first line that public interest in encryption has surged once it was revealed that terrorists behind the Paris and San Bernardino attacks "used encrypted communications to evade detection."

Submission + - Here's how a hacker is shaking down a medical clinic (

SpacemanukBEJY.53u writes: A hacker going by the nickname The Dark Lord is threatening to release nearly 48,000 medical records unless an orthopedic clinic in the U.S. pays $165,000 by July 8. The batch of data is one of three lots he's stolen from health care clinics that are now advertised on The Real Deal underground market. If the data is accurate, this particular clinic has no good options, a dilemma faced by organizations confronted with extortion attempts by cybercriminals. It's an unsettling tale. The hacker sent a highly personal ransom letter to the clinic's director, including the names of his family members and their Social Security Numbers. "I do not feel bad or guilty about any of this," the hacker says.

Submission + - Activision abuses DMCA to take knock indie game entirely off Steam

He Who Has No Name writes: We've seen brain-dead, overzealous, and entirely over-automated DMCA takedown requests bring down music and videos, but this may be the first case of an entire video game being knocked out. Earlier today David Prassel, creator of Trek Industries and developer of the not-without-controversy ORION: Dino Horde / Prelude and the early-access Guardians of ORION, posted that his current project had been entirely removed from Steam after a questionable DMCA allegation from Activision. Prassel explains further, "We've made Steam our primary platform, but this has put a definite scare into us going forward considering our entire livelihood can be pulled without a moments notice, without any warning or proper verification. I cannot even confirm that the representative from Activision is a real person as absolutely no results pop up in any of my searches." Image comparisons against at least two of the weapon models claimed to be infringing were posted by Prassel and in at least one thread on reddit in /r/pcmasterrace.

What's more, it appears Activision is alleging not a vertex-for-vertex and texel-for-texel theft and duplication of the Call Of Duty: Black Ops 3 2D & 3D art assets, but in fact an infringing artistic similarity and design of separately created art content — something that the DMCA does not cover (and which more would likely fall under copyright or possibly trade dress).

Since this takedown falls directly in the middle of the Steam Summer Sale — which probably is not a coincidence — and will profoundly impact Trek Industry's potential sales, does this make a case for substantial reform in the appeals & response process in DMCA takedown demands, adding a due process and rebuttal window to prevent takedown requests from being essentially weaponized?

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"Conversion, fastidious Goddess, loves blood better than brick, and feasts most subtly on the human will." -- Virginia Woolf, "Mrs. Dalloway"